Latest Hugo Chavez News

  • Venezuela receives $5 bn funding from China
    Venezuela receives $5 bn funding from China Mon, Apr 20, 2015

    Inflation reached 68.5% in Venezuela in 2014 and many basic goods are in short supply More »

  • Maduro marks two years in power in tough times
    Maduro marks two years in power in tough times Sun, Apr 19, 2015

    Embattled President Nicolas Maduro marks two years in power Sunday with Venezuela's deep pockets pinched hard by plummeting oil prices, Latin America's highest inflation and simmering anger on the streets. More »

  • Uruguayan leftist writer Eduardo Galeano dies at 74
    Uruguayan leftist writer Eduardo Galeano dies at 74 Mon, Apr 13, 2015

    Uruguayan writer Eduardo Galeano, an icon of the Latin American left who chronicled the region's injustices in a career that spanned decades and crossed genres, died Monday at age 74. More »

  • Uruguayan anti-capitalist writer Eduardo Galeano dies
    Uruguayan anti-capitalist writer Eduardo Galeano dies Mon, Apr 13, 2015

    Eduardo Galeano, a Uruguayan journalist and author who was a leading light in Latin America's anti-capitalist movement, died after a battle with lung cancer on Monday, his publisher said. Galeano was 74. Galeano's writing career spanned half a century, but he is best-known for his seminal 1971 book 'The Open Veins of Latin America' ('Las Venas Abiertas de America Latina'). Crackling with indignant anger, the work describes the colonial-era scramble for Latin America's riches by European powers, followed in the twentieth century by the region's economic dominance by Britain and the United States. More »

  • Defying U.S., Cuba stands by Venezuela on eve of regional summit
    Defying U.S., Cuba stands by Venezuela on eve of regional summit Thu, Apr 9, 2015

    By Nelson Acosta HAVANA (Reuters) - Cuba said on Wednesday it would remain steadfast by Venezuela even as it seeks to improve ties with the United States, criticizing Washington's Venezuela policy before a summit meeting where the U.S. and Cuban leaders will meet face-to-face.     Cuban Vice-President Miguel Diaz-Canel chastised Washington over its decision last month to declare Venezuela a national security threat and order sanctions against seven Venezuelan officials.     "Nobody could think that in a process of re-establishing relations, which we're trying to move forward on with the United States, Cuban support for Venezuela could be made conditional," Diaz-Canel, the heir apparent to Cuban President Raul Castro, told reporters in Havana.     "If they attack Venezuela, they're attacking Cuba. More »

  • Fidel Castro makes first public appearance in 14 months
    Fidel Castro makes first public appearance in 14 months Sat, Apr 4, 2015

    Cuba's former president and revolutionary icon Fidel Castro has made his first public appearance in 14 months, local media reported Saturday. More »

  • Venezuela's anti-Obama signature drive passes 6 million
    Venezuela's anti-Obama signature drive passes 6 million Wed, Apr 1, 2015

    President Nicolas Maduro decreed a new annual "anti-imperialist" day on Tuesday and said a signature drive demanding the repeal of U.S. measures against Venezuela had passed 6 million. In the ideological enemies' worst spat of Maduro's two-year rule, President Barack Obama's government this month declared the OPEC nation a "security threat" and sanctioned seven officials accused of rights abuses and corruption. Maduro, the 52-year-old socialist successor to Hugo Chavez, said the March 9 measures would from 2016 be commemorated in Venezuela with a new "Day of Bolivarian Anti-Imperialism," a reference to independence hero Simon Bolivar. "History will remember you, President Obama, as the one who sought to intimidate a people, but instead arose their nationalist, patriotic and Bolivarian spirit," Maduro said in a weekly TV programme, from the western city of Coro. More »

  • LatAm leftists hold summit in support of Venezuela
    LatAm leftists hold summit in support of Venezuela Tue, Mar 17, 2015

    Leaders from leftist Latin American regional bloc ALBA gathered Tuesday for a summit in Caracas, a show of support for Venezuela in its mounting standoff with the United States. More »

  • Fidel Castro warns Venezuela is ready to confront US on sanctions
    Fidel Castro warns Venezuela is ready to confront US on sanctions Tue, Mar 17, 2015

    Cuba's Fidel Castro warned Tuesday that Venezuela was prepared to confront US "threats and impositions," and said Washington could no longer count on the Venezuelan military to do its bidding. More »

  • Maduro wins Venezuela decree powers in US confrontation
    Maduro wins Venezuela decree powers in US confrontation Sun, Mar 15, 2015

    Venezuelan lawmakers voted Sunday to give socialist President Nicolas Maduro special powers to go it alone in defense and public safety, amid an escalating confrontation with the United States. More »

  • Venezuela's Maduro given decree powers for rest of 2015
    Venezuela's Maduro given decree powers for rest of 2015 Sun, Mar 15, 2015

    By Deisy Buitrago and Andrew Cawthorne CARACAS (Reuters) - Venezuela's parliament granted President Nicolas Maduro decree powers on Sunday for the rest of 2015 in a move he says is to defend the country from U.S. meddling but opponents decry as evidence of autocracy. In a noisy National Assembly session, ruling Socialist Party legislators, who have a majority, applauded the "Enabling Law" as a legitimate response to a U.S. declaration that Venezuela is a security threat and sanctions on seven officials. "They (the United States) want to stick their hands into Venezuela's wealth, just as they have done in other countries," ruling party legislator Tania Diaz said, presenting the "anti-imperialist" Enabling Law to parliament. Outside, red-clad Maduro supporters chanted and held placards proclaiming: "Yankees go home." In their speeches, angry opposition lawmakers said Maduro was cynically exploiting the diplomatic flare-up with Washington to amass powers, justify repression and distract Venezuelans from economic problems including acute shortages. More »

  • Venezuela stages military exercise to counter U.S. 'threat'
    Venezuela stages military exercise to counter U.S. 'threat' Sun, Mar 15, 2015

    By Alexandra Ulmer and Deisy Buitrago CARACAS (Reuters) - Venezuela on Saturday staged a military exercise to counter an alleged U.S. threat, deploying soldiers and partisans across the country to march, man shoulder-fired missiles and defend an oil refinery from a simulated attack. Socialist President Nicolas Maduro has framed recent U.S. sanctions on seven Venezuelan officials as a bid to topple him, and on Saturday his government mobilized 80,000 soldiers and 20,000 civilians as part of a 10-day military drill. "The United States has declared Venezuela a threat," said General Vladimir Padrino, Venezuela's defence minister. "And that means an imminent danger for us, so we have to use the National Bolivarian Armed Forces (FANB) as part of our constitutional mission to guarantee independence and sovereignty." Opposition leaders labelled the exercise a farce and accused Maduro, increasingly unpopular as a result of an economic crisis, of seeking to distract Venezuelans from long queues for scarce products, sky-high inflation and rampant crime. More »

  • Venezuela gears up military machine amid economic crunch
    Venezuela gears up military machine amid economic crunch Sun, Mar 15, 2015

    Rolling out tanks, missiles and 100,000 men, Venezuela launched 10 days of military exercises, amid sky-high tensions over US sanctions slapped on officials accused of an opposition crackdown. More »

  • What happened to Putin? Satirists run riot online
    What happened to Putin? Satirists run riot online Fri, Mar 13, 2015

    A wave of savage mockery broke over Russian President Vladimir Putin across the Internet on Friday, sparked by days of absence from public view, despite official insistence it was business as usual in the Kremlin. State television footage of Putin working at his residence failed to quell the tide of fantastical theories circulating online that the 62-year-old Kremlin leader had died, been deposed, or travelled to Switzerland to watch his girlfriend give birth. Ukrainian children produced a cartoon showing Putin abducted from the Kremlin by aliens. While hard facts are scarce, there has been speculation of a split between rival Kremlin camps since the killing of opposition politician Boris Nemtsov near Red Square on Feb. 27. More »

  • Insight - Its red shirts fading, Venezuela's oil giant embraces pragmat …
    Insight - Its red shirts fading, Venezuela's oil giant embraces pragmat … Fri, Mar 13, 2015

    By Alexandra Ulmer and Marianna Parraga CARACAS/HOUSTON (Reuters) - A subtle change in office attire may be the most telling symbol of a quiet revolution taking place inside Venezuela's troubled economic engine, giant oil firm PDVSA. For years, PDVSA employees were encouraged to wear red shirts in support of late President Hugo Chavez's socialist movement. Rafael Ramirez, the former oil czar famously vowed the state-owned firm would be "redder than red" and sent workers to state rallies. Over the past few months, however, the company's new management - led by president Eulogio del Pino, a low-profile Stanford-educated engineer - has eased up on revolutionary garb and attendance at militant gatherings, according to sources within and outside the company. More »

  • Venezuela's Maduro says may go to U.S. to challenge Obama
    Venezuela's Maduro says may go to U.S. to challenge Obama Fri, Mar 13, 2015

    By Andrew Cawthorne CARACAS (Reuters) - Ridiculing the U.S. qualification of Venezuela as a security threat, President Nicolas Maduro said on Thursday he may travel to Washington to challenge American counterpart Barack Obama. "We demand, via all global diplomatic channels, that President Obama rectify and repeal the immoral decree declaring Venezuela a threat to the United States," Maduro said. In the worst flare-up between the ideological enemies since Maduro took power in 2013, Washington earlier this week declared a "national emergency" over "the unusual and extraordinary threat" from Venezuela and sanctioned seven officials over allegations of rights abuses and corruption. Conversely, it accuses Washington of helping coup plotters and preparing a military invention. More »

  • Venezuela envoy sorry for joke about bullets striking opponents Fri, Mar 13, 2015

    By Andrew Cawthorne CARACAS (Reuters) - Venezuela's ambassador to the Organization of American States apologised on Thursday for joking how bullets would sound going through "empty" heads of government opponents. "I added a bit of black humour at the end that might have been a mistake," the veteran diplomat and former foreign minister, Roy Chaderton, said of his controversial remarks earlier in the week. The comments came when he was explaining how sniper bullets would not distinguish between "Chavistas" and "squalid ones" - terms coined during the 1999-2013 rule of socialist leader Hugo Chavez to describe government supporters and opponents. In Thursday's radio interview, Chaderton argued that his critics had twisted his comments and missed his point that opponents of President Nicolas Maduro's government would also be at risk if there was a U.S. invasion of Venezuela. More »

  • Venezuelan leader closer to decree powers
    Venezuelan leader closer to decree powers Wed, Mar 11, 2015

    Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro moved closer Wednesday to ruling by decree after the legislature held a first vote that would allow him to act against "external or internal" threats to peace. More »

  • U.S. sanctions may be godsend for struggling Venezuelan leader Wed, Mar 11, 2015

    By Alexandra Ulmer CARACAS (Reuters) - At the start of the year, a grave-faced President Nicolas Maduro promised "God would provide" after oil prices crashed by half, exacerbating Venezuela's deep recession, chronic shortages and sky-high inflation. 'PLAYING INTO MADURO'S HANDS' Washington's sanctions hand Maduro, whose popularity has slipped to the low 20s according to local pollster Datanalisis, ammunition to back his view of foreign sabotage. More »

  • Venezuela's Maduro seeks decree powers to face U.S. 'imperialism …
    Venezuela's Maduro seeks decree powers to face U.S. 'imperialism … Wed, Mar 11, 2015

    By Andrew Cawthorne CARACAS (Reuters) - Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro on Tuesday asked parliament for decree powers in response to new U.S. sanctions, in a move opposition critics slammed as a power-grab. If as expected the government-controlled National Assembly approves his request for an "Enabling Law", it would be the second time the 52-year-old successor to Hugo Chavez has gained these expanded powers since winning election in 2013. "I've come to ask for an Enabling Law to confront the aggression of the most powerful country in the world, the United States, against this beautiful nation," Maduro told parliament. "This is a law that will prepare our country, may we never be caught off guard." His adversaries say he is using the worst flare-up with Washington during his nearly two-year rule to justify autocratic governance, sidetrack parliament and distract attention from a shrinking economy and chronic product shortages. More »

  • U.S. declares Venezuela a national security threat, sanctions top officials
    U.S. declares Venezuela a national security threat, sanctions top officials Tue, Mar 10, 2015

    By Jeff Mason and Roberta Rampton WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States declared Venezuela a national security threat on Monday and ordered sanctions against seven officials from the oil-rich country in the worst bilateral diplomatic dispute since socialist President Nicolas Maduro took office in 2013. U.S. President Barack Obama signed and issued the executive order, which senior administration officials said did not target Venezuela's energy sector or broader economy. More »

  • Obama orders deeper Venezuela sanctions over abuses
    Obama orders deeper Venezuela sanctions over abuses Mon, Mar 9, 2015

    US President Barack Obama ordered new sanctions Monday against senior Venezuelan officials involved in cracking down on the opposition. More »

  • Crisis-hit Venezuela pays tribute to Chavez, two years on
    Crisis-hit Venezuela pays tribute to Chavez, two years on Thu, Mar 5, 2015

    Fireworks lit up the dawn skies as Venezuela paid tribute Thursday to leftist firebrand Hugo Chavez two years after his death, but the movement he founded faces its worst approval ratings ever amid a deepening economic crisis. More »

  • In crisis-hit Venezuela, even opponents miss Chavez
    In crisis-hit Venezuela, even opponents miss Chavez Thu, Mar 5, 2015

    Since Hugo Chavez died two years ago, Venezuela's economy has tanked and the government has lurched toward more repressive tactics, triggering nostalgia among the late leftist firebrand's supporters and even his opponents. More »

  • Venezuela opposition leader fears vote will be scrapped
    Venezuela opposition leader fears vote will be scrapped Wed, Mar 4, 2015

    Venezuelan opposition leader Henrique Capriles says he fears President Nicolas Maduro's crisis-hit government, fearing a humiliating loss, will cancel key legislative elections later this year. More »

  • Venezuelans fret Maduro measures may slow U.S. visas
    Venezuelans fret Maduro measures may slow U.S. visas Wed, Mar 4, 2015

    By Andrew Cawthorne CARACAS (Reuters) - Queuing in their hundreds from dawn then often waiting for hours in the sun, Venezuelans seeking U.S. visas fear their government's order to slash American embassy staff to less than a fifth of current levels may snarl the process far more. In his latest spat with the United States, socialist President Nicolas Maduro has accused Washington of promoting a coup against him and announced a series of reprisal measures, including the order to downsize the enormous U.S. mission in Caracas from 100 to 17 staff within two weeks. I think it's crazy, this decision," she said, as scores of Venezuelans waited in the street or under trees outside the hilltop embassy. The U.S. visa system in Venezuela seems relatively efficient, with payments and applications made in advance on the internet, before appointments are scheduled. More »

  • Venezuela launches new US visa requirement
    Venezuela launches new US visa requirement Tue, Mar 3, 2015

    Venezuela began requiring visas for US travelers to the country Tuesday, implementing a measure announced by President Nicolas Maduro in retaliation for American "meddling." More »

  • Venezuela initiates visa requirement for U.S. travellers Tue, Mar 3, 2015

    CARACAS (Reuters) - Venezuela on Tuesday began requiring U.S. travellers to seek visas before visiting the South American nation amid an escalation of diplomatic tensions between Washington and the administration of President Nicolas Maduro. The socialist government on Monday ordered the U.S. Embassy in Caracas to slash its staff by 80 percent, days after Maduro said several Americans had been detained on suspicions they were involved in espionage. ... More »

  • Venezuela tells U.S. embassy in Caracas: Cut staff by 80 percent Mon, Mar 2, 2015

    By Diego Ore CARACAS (Reuters) - Venezuela on Monday ordered the U.S. embassy in Caracas to reduce staff from 100 to 17 amid the worst diplomatic flare-up between the two ideological foes since socialist President Nicolas Maduro was elected in 2013. Maduro, who like his predecessor Hugo Chavez frequently locks horns with Washington, has stepped up accusations in recent weeks that the United States is seeking to topple him. The measures announced in response to alleged coup plotting are the most significant against Washington of Maduro's nearly two-year rule, though foes say they represent a timeworn tactic to distract Venezuelans from their economic troubles. "They have 15 days to reduce the size of their embassy to 17 staffers," Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez said after a meeting with the U.S. Chargé d'Affaires Lee McClenny, Washington's most senior diplomat in Venezuela. More »

  • Insight - As Venezuela coffee output sinks, it swaps oil to import Nicaraguan …
    Insight - As Venezuela coffee output sinks, it swaps oil to import Nicaraguan … Sun, Mar 1, 2015

    By Luc Cohen and Ivan Castro NEW YORK/MANAGUA (Reuters) - Venezuela, once a proud exporter of premium coffee, has been reduced to swapping crude oil for growing volumes of Nicaraguan coffee beans to make sure worsening economic turmoil does not prevent people from getting their caffeine fix.     For the first time on record, coffee imports this year will exceed the bean output of Venezuela's centuries-old coffee industry, according to U.S. government estimates. ... More »

  • Venezuela to limit US diplomats, require visas for Americans
    Venezuela to limit US diplomats, require visas for Americans Sun, Mar 1, 2015

    President Nicolas Maduro plans to limit the US diplomatic presence in Venezuela and require American tourists to obtain visas, in a sign of growing tensions between the two countries. More »

  • 5 Similarities Between Spain's Podemos Party and Greece's Syriza Fri, Feb 27, 2015

    Syriza, the leftist coalition elected last month to lead Greece, has an ally in Spain’s Podemos party, the subject of a page-one article in The Wall Street Journal. Podemos, which is surging in voter surveys less than a year before Spanish elections, shares Syriza’s outlook on eurozone troubles that have hit both countries hard. More »

  • Protests continue in Venezuela as teen shot by police is buried
    Protests continue in Venezuela as teen shot by police is buried Thu, Feb 26, 2015

    By Javier Faria SAN CRISTOBAL, Venezuela (Reuters) - Sporadic protests flared in different parts of Venezuela on Wednesday, a day after a policeman shot dead a teenager during a demonstration against President Nicolas Maduro's government in the volatile city of San Cristobal. The worst unrest was again in San Cristobal, where distraught relatives of 14-year-old Kluibert Roa held a wake and funeral following his killing on Tuesday. Local authorities declared a day of mourning, and many shops stayed closed in fear of trouble as well as to honour Roa. "My son was neither an opposition supporter nor a 'Chavista,' he was my son, the apple of my eye," his father, Erick Roa, said at the funeral. More »

  • Venezuelan students demand end to 'deadly force' order
    Venezuelan students demand end to 'deadly force' order Wed, Feb 25, 2015

    Angry Venezuelan students marched to the justice ministry Wednesday to demand it revoke a resolution allowing police to use deadly force at protests after an officer was charged with killing a 14-year-old boy. More »

  • Protests continue during burial of Venezuela teen shot by police
    Protests continue during burial of Venezuela teen shot by police Wed, Feb 25, 2015

    By Javier Farias SAN CRISTOBAL, Venezuela (Reuters) - Sporadic protests flared in different parts of Venezuela on Wednesday after a policeman shot dead a teenager during a demonstration against President Nicolas Maduro's government in the volatile city of San Cristobal. The worst unrest was again in San Cristobal where distraught relatives of 14-year-old Kluibert Roa held a wake and funeral following his killing on Tuesday. ... More »